Bold ambition. Collective action.
The UBC Climate Action Plan 2030 (CAP 2030) puts the university on an accelerated path to net zero emissions for buildings and energy supply as well as to significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions for extended impact areas over the next 15 years.
On this page, learn more about the targets, actions and strategies for CAP 2030 and what you can do to take action now. You can also view past climate action plans.
What does net zero emissions mean and why is it important?
Net zero emission means that all human-caused emissions (such as those from fossil-fueled vehicles and factories) should be reduced as close to zero as possible. Some greenhouse gases might still be emitted, but they would be balanced by the removal of an equivalent amount of greenhouse gases from the atmosphere.
Why is this important?
It's the only way to stop climate change. As long as greenhouse gases keep being added to the atmosphere, the average global temperature will keep rising.
With the release of CAP 2030, UBC has pledged to significantly reduce greenhouse gas emission reductions by 2030 for both the Vancouver and Okanagan campuses. Together, these reductions will help UBC contribute to meeting targets set in the Paris Agreement, with the goal of limiting global warming to 1.5°C. That’s the threshold many scientists have said is crucial to avoid the most disastrous effects of global warming.
Recognizing Climate Justice
UBC recognizes that the ability to partake in sustainable actions may be constrained by lack of privilege and inequality. Engaging principles of climate justice are particularly relevant when developing climate actions related to food systems, commuting and business air travel. Identification and removal of barriers to choosing alternatives will be integral to shifting cultural norms, while ensuring an equitable approach.
85% reduction in campus operations emissions
This reduction would significantly exceed the 45% Paris Agreement emissions reduction target by 2030 to keep global warming to 1.5°C. Reducing emissions by 85% translates to eliminating virtually all conventional fossil fuel use from campus operations.
45% collective reduction in emissions from extended impact sources
This encompasses commuting, business air travel, food, waste and materials, and embodied carbon. This will keep the university’s reductions in alignment with the Paris Agreement’s 1.5°C target.
Achieve a 100% reduction in operational greenhouse gas emissions
15 years ahead of UBC’s original net zero target (2050).
Targets, Strategies and Actions by Focus Area
The following is a summary of key actions identified in the CAP 2030 working group process, broken down across all focus areas.
Looking for a quick overview of CAP 2030? Take a look at the CAP 2030 Plan at a Glance.